Hunters’ Employment Department is a team of leading employment lawyers based in central London. Hunters’ employment team gives detached, focused and practical advice. The team cares about their clients, strong or weak, employers or employees, and provide objectivity and practicality for them, whilst being sensitive to their needs. Where a dispute cannot be resolved amicably by the parties themselves, the employment team will represent their client in any dispute resolution forum – mediation, arbitration, the Employment Tribunals or the Courts.
Q Has the referendum changed my contract of employment?
A No. The referendum did not change the law and your contract will be unaffected. However, a lot of employment rights are based on principles of European law and we will have to watch whether the government will seek to modify or repeal these rights. They include discrimination rights, collective redundancy consultation obligations, the “TUPE” rights when a business is transferred, rights to family leave, working time.
Q I am about to accept a job in the UK. How can I protect my position?
A If you are one of the thousands of EU citizens who are coming to work in the UK, the terms of your contract of employment are likely to protect you against any detrimental legislative changes. Thus, you should consider requesting that issues that are important to you or your family are specifically addressed in your contract. For example, you may need to agree specifically your working hours, the number of paid holidays, the requirement for the employer to obtain a work permit for you or to transfer you to another country of your choice, relocation expenses, and a special exit payment if your employment has to be terminated because you are required to leave the UK.
Q As an EU national, can I still work anywhere in the EU?
A For the moment, yes. The UK is still a full member of the EU and the right of free movement of EU citizens still applies. Thus, all EU citizens (including the British) can work anywhere in the EU. Whether this changes will depend on what deal the UK government can negotiate with the EU. At present, powerful EU countries such as Germany and France are insisting on the principle of free movement of workers in return for access to the single market. We would hope that a sensible compromise will be reached whereby, as a minimum, foreign nationals living in the UK, and UK citizens living in the EU, will be allowed to remain where they are. They may be able to acquire local rights of citizenship.
Q As a farmer, can I continue to employ seasonal migrant labour from the EU?
A For the moment, yes; but the immigration was such a huge issue during the Brexit campaign, that it is likely that some change in the rules will be made.
Q Will my personal data be secure following Brexit?
A The Data Protection Act 1998 implements the Data Protection Directive (1995) and personal data is currently protected against transfer to a country outside the EU unless there are adequate protections. It would be astonishing if the data protection rules were repealed without equivalent safe harbour arrangements (as with the USA) being put in place.
Stephen Morrall – Partner
Stephen advises companies, partnerships and entrepreneurs on all corporate and commercial aspects of their business. This includes M&A, joint ventures, partnership structures, the structure and governance of closely-held and family businesses, finance and security transactions, international trade, commercial contracts and employment law.
Contact Stephen here.
This information is based on the law in force as at 26 July 2016. Although we endeavour to ensure that the content is accurate and up to date as at that date, it is designed to provide general guidance only and is not intended to be comprehensive or to constitute professional advice. Specific advice should always be sought, and you should only rely on advice which is given, by reference to particular facts and circumstances.
If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to contact our Solicitors, who will be able to assist you further.